Remember Winterling's in Highlandtown? Specializing in German cuisine and Maryland seafood, the restaurant at 3200 Foster Ave. was another one of those disappearing Baltimore landmarks. It closed last February with considerably less notice than Haussner's and some of the others received. Now it's been resurrected as Soprano's Cafe. Interestingly, co-owner Jeff Patti tells me the address is now considered Canton, which is - as we all know - one of the trendier places to open a new restaurant.
Greg Orendorff, an owner of Luigi Petti in Little Italy, and Patti have completely remodeled the space. The new restaurant has seating for 160, with murals of Baltimore scenes by local artist Yuri. (He also painted the movie stars in the "Godfather" room.) There's a sports bar as well.
Orendorff and his son Mark are doing the cooking. The specialties are homemade Italian food and steamed crabs, with jumbo lump crab cakes and pasta made in the Luigi Petti kitchen being two signature dishes.
Soprano's Cafe is open for lunch and dinner daily.
New name, new menu
Meanwhile, Weber's on Boston, which closed May 7, has new owners and should reopen the first week in July as the New Orleans Grill. Ben Hauser, who owned Favorites pub in Towson, and his chef, Brent Davidson, who last worked at the DuClaw Brewing Company in Bel Air, are planning a menu that Davidson describes as "casual, a `Marylandizing' of Creole and Cajun." Look for whole steamed crayfish and seafood Creole on the menu.
The space is being renovated, with booths replacing many of the tables. "The tablecloths have come off, but we'll still have linen napkins," says Davidson.
Look for a "late fare" menu that will be a little more extensive than the usual after-hours bar food.
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